• Betting Takes a Back Seat in Macau on Coronavirus Fears
    Zacks

    Betting Takes a Back Seat in Macau on Coronavirus Fears

    Macau is likely to record revenue decline in 2020. The coronavirus crisis is hurting the industry in other parts of the world as well.

  • Market Crash 2020: Why Are These Canadian Stocks Down So Much?
    The Motley Fool

    Market Crash 2020: Why Are These Canadian Stocks Down So Much?

    Stocks unfairly punished by today's market crash include Rogers Sugar (TSX:RSI), Molson Coors (TSX:TPX.B)(NYSE:TAP), and Northwest Healthcare REIT (TSX:NWH.UN). The post Market Crash 2020: Why Are These Canadian Stocks Down So Much? appeared first on The Motley Fool Canada.

  • U.S. sues to force Altria to unwind investment in Juul
    Reuters

    U.S. sues to force Altria to unwind investment in Juul

    The U.S. Federal Trade Commission said on Wednesday it had filed a complaint aimed at forcing Marlboro maker Altria Group to sell its investment in e-cigarette maker Juul Labs Inc. The FTC has probed Altria's decision to buy a 35% stake in Juul, announced in December 2018, for $12.8 billion (10.33 billion pounds). The value of the investment has dwindled to $4.2 billion, following a series of writedowns last year, as Juul faced litigation and heightened regulatory scrutiny over its contribution to a surge in teenage vaping.

  • Boston Beer (SAM) Stock Moves -0.86%: What You Should Know
    Zacks

    Boston Beer (SAM) Stock Moves -0.86%: What You Should Know

    In the latest trading session, Boston Beer (SAM) closed at $364.39, marking a -0.86% move from the previous day.

  • The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: UBER, ZM, MSFT, STZ and CGC
    Zacks

    The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: UBER, ZM, MSFT, STZ and CGC

    The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: UBER, ZM, MSFT, STZ and CGC

  • Bloomberg

    Coronavirus Vaccine Race Gets Unlikely Partner: Big Tobacco

    (Bloomberg) -- Cigarette makers may seem like an unlikely source of life-saving vaccines, yet Philip Morris International Inc. and British American Tobacco Plc are trying to devise a defense against the coronavirus from the humble tobacco leaf.BAT said Wednesday that it’s in pre-clinical testing of a plant-based vaccine via a U.S. biotech subsidiary Kentucky BioProcessing. Philip Morris has said its partially owned Canadian unit Medicago expects to start human trials for a potential vaccine this summer.“We believe we have made a significant breakthrough,” said David O’Reilly, BAT’s director of scientific research. “We stand ready to work with governments and all stakeholders to help win the war against Covid-19.”Big Tobacco isn’t a total stranger to the field: BAT’s Kentucky BioProcessing was involved in developing ZMapp, an Ebola drug, with Mapp Biopharmaceutical Inc. in 2014 -- but that treatment never made it out of the lab. The race to find a vaccine is essential as world leaders question how long countries can remain in lockdown without extinguishing future economic prospects.The involvement of tobacco companies in the fight against Covid-19 may strike some as paradoxical as the World Health Organization has said smoking may raise the risk of coming down with more severe reactions to the disease.Philip Morris’s Medicago uses a virus-like particle grown in a close relative of the tobacco plant. Plant-based vaccines mimic viruses and allow the body’s immune system to recognize them and create an immune response, without being able to infect or replicate.Kentucky BioProcessing recently cloned a portion of Covid-19’s genetic sequence, which led to a substance that induces the production of antibodies. The antigen was then inserted into tobacco plants for reproduction. According to BAT, the method generates the vaccine faster than conventional methods, reducing the time required from several months to about six weeks.BAT’s U.S. unit Reynolds American bought Kentucky BioProcessing in 2014 planning to use its tobacco extraction technology to develop alternatives to cigarettes. The company is now exploring partnerships with government agencies to bring the experimental vaccine to clinical studies. BAT said while the unit is a commercial business, its work on a Covid-19 vaccine will be on a not-for-profit basis.Researchers in China were quick to share the virus’s genetic sequence with other scientists, providing them with a headstart to hunt for treatments and vaccines. They are testing everything from drugs first developed for HIV and the flu to antibody-containing plasma from recovered patients.(Updates with smoking’s effect on Covid-19 patients in fifth paragraph)For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

  • Asahi wins conditional Australia nod for $11 billion AB InBev unit buy
    Reuters

    Asahi wins conditional Australia nod for $11 billion AB InBev unit buy

    Australia's Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) said on Wednesday it has approved the deal after Asahi gave a court-enforceable undertaking to sell AB InBev's Stella Artois and Beck's beer brands and the Strongbow, Bonamy's and Little Green cider brands. An Asahi spokesman confirmed that the company agreed to the divestments for its planned purchase of Carlton & United Breweries (CUB).

  • Booze Takes The Edge Off The Coronavirus
    Zacks

    Booze Takes The Edge Off The Coronavirus

    Alcohol sales are flying this month and online delivery services are a primary catalyst

  • The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: Alphabet, Procter & Gamble, Philip Morris, Novo Nordisk and Tesla
    Zacks

    The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: Alphabet, Procter & Gamble, Philip Morris, Novo Nordisk and Tesla

    The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: Alphabet, Procter & Gamble, Philip Morris, Novo Nordisk and Tesla

  • Altria Stock Rises 4%
    Investing.com

    Altria Stock Rises 4%

    Investing.com - Altria (NYSE:MO) Stock rose by 4.13% to trade at $38.84 by 14:44 (18:44 GMT) on Tuesday on the NYSE exchange.

  • Looks Like the Wrong Time to Quit Smoking
    Bloomberg

    Looks Like the Wrong Time to Quit Smoking

    (Bloomberg Opinion) -- Lloyd Bridges’s character in the disaster comedy “Airplane” captured it quite well when he said, “Looks like I picked the wrong week to quit smoking.” It’s a sentiment shared by people locked down around the world. While demand for most everything outside of food and toilet paper has declined, cigarettes are holding up.In an environment where companies are ditching their profit guidance left, right and center, Imperial Brands Plc, which makes Kool and Gauloises cigarettes, said on Tuesday that so far the virus had had no material impact on performance and trading remained in line with expectations. That echoes comments two weeks ago from British American Tobacco Plc. Shares in Imperial rose as much as 15%In the coronavirus-induced consumer crisis, big tobacco is certainly living up to its defensive reputation.After all, if people are addicted to nicotine, they still need their fix. And the pandemic-stricken world we live in provides incentives to light up more often:  Anxiety induced by ever-grimmer headlines; the fact that local stores selling cigarettes are still open; and the ease with which you can take a fag break when working from home as opposed to having to step outside the office.But it’s not unqualified good news for the industry.Imperial, which also makes Golden Virginia tobacco,  said that its factories were building contingency stocks, and its Logista distribution business serving Italy, France and Spain was doing the same to ensure supplies could get through to retailers. It’s also possible that as with rice and pasta, consumers are stockpiling cigarettes in case of even more stringent isolation measures down the road. So some demand may have been pulled forward, meaning this uptick might not be sustained in the long term.What’s more concerning is a recent focus on the increased risk of Covid-19 to smokers, and whether that may encourage more people to quit once the crisis has passed. Reports that the state of New York was in discussions about potentially banning cigarettes made headlines, but Bloomberg News reported on Monday that consideration of a ban was “100% not true.”Still, a renewed focus on personal health, especially where everyone’s lungs are concerned, would likely hurt cigarette sales in the future. These are all challenges tobacco companies will have to grapple with as they race to find what alternative product will drive growth if or when the world does kick its cigarette habit. The industry was already working to get past questions about health risks around vaping, which was last year linked with a spate of cases of respiratory illness. Groups including BAT, Altria Group Inc. and Philip Morris International Inc. have invested billions of dollars in electronic cigarettes and devices that heat rather than burn tobacco. Altria took a 35% stake in vaping leader Juul Labs Inc., which it has now written down. Right now, though, with the prospect of economic conditions deteriorating, tobacco’s resilience in the face of recession should come to the fore, especially given that traditional cigarettes remain the industry’s most profitable product. Smokers may trade down if money becomes tight, or switch to rolling their own cigarettes. But Duncan Fox, an analyst at Bloomberg Intelligence, says that even then pure tobacco has higher margins.So from a position a few months ago, where vaping sales were under pressure, but there were worries about an accelerated decline in smoking traditional cigarettes too, Big Tobacco’s core business now looks to be on a surer footing. That’s bad for public health, and for those funds that choose not to invest in cigarettes. But at least it can help preserve the industry’s profits and chunky dividend payouts for investors, when those at many other companies are suffering.This column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of Bloomberg LP and its owners.Andrea Felsted is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering the consumer and retail industries. She previously worked at the Financial Times.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinionSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

  • Molson Coors (TSX:TPX.B) Might Buy This Cannabis Stock in 2020
    The Motley Fool

    Molson Coors (TSX:TPX.B) Might Buy This Cannabis Stock in 2020

    Molson Coors Canada Inc. (TSX:TPX.B)(NYSE:TAP) could enter the marijuana market in 2020. That's good news for one cannabis stock in particular.The post Molson Coors (TSX:TPX.B) Might Buy This Cannabis Stock in 2020 appeared first on The Motley Fool Canada.

  • Philip Morris Stock Rises 3%
    Investing.com

    Philip Morris Stock Rises 3%

    Investing.com - Philip Morris (NYSE:PM) Stock rose by 3.01% to trade at $74.70 by 10:41 (14:41 GMT) on Tuesday on the NYSE exchange.

  • Buy Corona Maker Constellation (STZ) Stock Before Q4 Earnings Amid Surge?
    Zacks

    Buy Corona Maker Constellation (STZ) Stock Before Q4 Earnings Amid Surge?

    Constellation Brands (STZ) shares have surged 40% in the last week. So now might be time for investors to consider buying the Corona beer maker's stock before it reports its Q4 fiscal 2020 results on Friday, April 3...

  • 'There is no playbook': China reverses course and closes movie theaters over coronavirus fears
    Yahoo Finance

    'There is no playbook': China reverses course and closes movie theaters over coronavirus fears

    China suddenly shut down approximately 600-700 cinemas (again) despite its original plan to gradually reopen as a result of the slowdown.

  • Altria (MO) Gains But Lags Market: What You Should Know
    Zacks

    Altria (MO) Gains But Lags Market: What You Should Know

    Altria (MO) closed the most recent trading day at $37.31, moving +1.83% from the previous trading session.

  • Investors Clamor for Credit With New Deal Demand Off the Charts
    Bloomberg

    Investors Clamor for Credit With New Deal Demand Off the Charts

    (Bloomberg) -- Investors are meeting a flood of corporate debt issuance with even greater demand, a strong sign for risk appetite as issuers continue to bring new deals.YUM! Brands Inc., brought the first U.S. high-yield offering in nearly a month, boosted the size of its deal to $600 million from $500 million amid $3 billion of orders. Oracle Corp., which was downgraded by two credit raters after announcing a deal Monday, had amassed more than $50 billion in orders for what became a $20 billion offering, according to people with knowledge of the matter.Credit markets are showing signs of thawing, as strong reception of record investment-grade issuance has trickled into the high-yield market. While market access was initially limited to only top-notch firms like Exxon Mobil Corp. and PepsiCo Inc. just two weeks ago, investors have since gotten more comfortable with riskier names, and massive demand has cut down borrowing costs.Last week, U.S. companies borrowed a record $109 billion, met with $550 billion of demand, in what one dealer called a “food fight” for new bonds. It was a similar story in Europe, where investors placed more than 310 billion euros ($340 billion) of orders for about 75 billion euros of bonds. Asia’s dollar bond market, however, hasn’t had any issuance for several weeks.“As corporates should remain keen on retaining liquidity to weather the growing pain of lockdowns, we expect issuance windows to continue to attract issuers,” Commerzbank strategists said in a note to clients this morning.Investment-grade issuers marketed massive deals. Oracle was in the market for the first time since 2017 with a $20 billion six-part offering, with maturities ranging from five to 40 years. AB InBev’s 4.5 billion euro sale included bonds due in seven, 12 and 20 years.U.S.YUM! Brands sold the first junk bond sale since March 4, one of the most positive signs of the recovery in credit to date. The investment-grade market continues to be active, with 12 deals set to price a combined $37.175 billion.Sysco also sold a jumbo transaction with maturities ranging from five to 30 years. It’s a quick return for the company, which last sold bonds on Feb. 11Oracle’s bonds tightened 40 bps from initial talk to pricing as order books swelledFor deal updates, click here for the New Issue MonitorAirlines worldwide raised more than $17 billion in bank loans in March to shore up finances as the coronavirus grounds flights, with U.S. carriers like Delta the most activeEuropeSeven deals combined to price 10.8 billion euros, putting Europe’s primary market on a path to post 500 billion euros of quarterly sales for the first time.AB InBev, Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc. and Volkswagen AG led the calendar with multi-tranche offeringsGoldman Sachs says it’s too early to decisively say market’s have “turned the corner,” while JPMorgan says the worst has passedEuro IG company bond spreads at 241 basis points have eased slightly after reaching the highest since 2012, according to a Bloomberg Barclays index; current levels are about 35bps too wide as the market is “not properly discounting” ECB corporate bond purchases, according to ABN Amro strategistsCompanies are also heading to the loan market to shore up financial buffers, with Airbus and Daimler potentially closing at least 25 billion euros ($28 billion) of combined new loans within weeksAsiaThe Markit iTraxx Asia ex-Japan index of credit-default swaps increased about 8 basis points to around 142, according to traders; the gauge tumbled 49 basis points last week, its steepest fall on a percentage basis since 2009, according to CMA dataSpreads on Asia investment-grade dollar bonds were 5-10 basis points wider this morning, according to traders, putting them on track to widen for the first day in five; liquidity is very thin, according to one of the tradersGlobal credit is a “buyers’ market right now” for investors holding cash, according to portfolio manager Raymond Lee at Kapstream Capital. “Even high-quality, high-rated investment-grade names are trading very wide based on historicals and look like good investments”A global economic slowdown caused by virus containment steps “will trigger a default cycle in credit worldwide,” said Paul Lukaszewski, head of corporate debt for Asia and Australia at Aberdeen Standard Investments“The question for investors to assess is how severe this cycle will be compared to what is priced in,” he said, adding that the wide credit spread levels last week had reached the peaks of all prior downturns this century with the exception of the global financial crisisLocal currency markets in Asia have also been hit; the latest sign of that was in Korea, where yields have jumped:For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

  • Top Analyst Reports for Alphabet, Procter & Gamble & Philip Morris
    Zacks

    Top Analyst Reports for Alphabet, Procter & Gamble & Philip Morris

    Top Analyst Reports for Alphabet, Procter & Gamble & Philip Morris

  • Penn National Revokes 2020 Outlook due to Coronavirus Scare
    Zacks

    Penn National Revokes 2020 Outlook due to Coronavirus Scare

    Penn National (PENN) initiates strategic measures to reduce operating expenses and protect its business during the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • JPMorgan, Wells Fargo, Walgreens, Constellation Brands and Nike are part of Zacks Earnings Preview
    Zacks

    JPMorgan, Wells Fargo, Walgreens, Constellation Brands and Nike are part of Zacks Earnings Preview

    JPMorgan, Wells Fargo, Walgreens, Constellation Brands and Nike are part of Zacks Earnings Preview

  • Factors Influencing Constellation Brands' (STZ) Q4 Earnings
    Zacks

    Factors Influencing Constellation Brands' (STZ) Q4 Earnings

    Constellation Brands' (STZ) fourth-quarter fiscal 2020 results are likely to reflect gains from the robust corona beer business, innovation pipeline and strong depletion growth.

  • Coronavirus Fears Ease in China: Will Macau Gaming Rebound?
    Zacks

    Coronavirus Fears Ease in China: Will Macau Gaming Rebound?

    Macau casinos resume operations after coronavirus-led shutdown. Macau gross revenues in March likely to be down sharply following a steep decrease in February.

  • The World’s Biggest Wealth Fund Reaps an Ethical Bonus
    Bloomberg

    The World’s Biggest Wealth Fund Reaps an Ethical Bonus

    (Bloomberg Opinion) -- Norway’s sovereign wealth fund, the world’s biggest with assets of about $945 billion, has seen its returns eroded this year as the Covid-19 pandemic trashes equities. Its ethical approach to investing, however, may help it eventually emerge from the rout with fewer bruises than other asset managers.Norges Bank Investment Management’s equity portfolio was down about 23% through Wednesday, the fund said last week. That followed a return on stocks of 26% in 2019 that, along with its fixed income and property investments, contributed to an overall return for last year of almost 20%, the best performance since 2009.None of that was too surprising. Its equity returns act as a proxy for global stocks, which boomed last year and have plummeted in recent weeks. What stands out, though, is how the fund is starting to reap the benefits of putting environmental, social and governance considerations at the forefront of its investment decisions, while the rest of the investing crowd starts to catch up with the need for capital allocation to serve a broader aim of ranges than just corporate profitability.  The details provided in the fund’s “Return and Risk” report make it possible to discern a possible pathway to success.The fund has two broad categories of companies it shuns and ejects from its benchmark calculations: Exclusions based on products discard weapons makers, tobacco companies and those that depend on coal production for their revenue; exclusions based on corporate conduct cover firms guilty of corruption, environmental damage or human rights violations. Overall, kicking miscreants out of the portfolio has boosted returns for the past two years.The impact of that stance is evolving over time. As the chart shows, swings between positive and negative contributions are getting smaller. When looked at since 2006, returns have been 1.3 percentage points lower than they would have been without the exclusions, according to the fund’s calculations. But the bulk of that underperformance is because of a rip-roaring performance by tobacco companies Philip Morris International Inc. and Altria Group Inc. for most of that time, although they’ve dipped recently.As a result, the decision to exclude tobacco producers and makers of other potentially harmful products have subtracted 2.1 percentage points from returns in the past decade and a half or so. But that only tells part of the story.By contrast, the decision to avoid companies on the basis of their conduct toward society has actually boosted returns by 0.8 percentage point since 2006, the fund calculates. Moreover, as environmental, social and governance issues have become more prevalent in portfolio construction across the industry as a whole and more fund managers adopt similar exclusion policies, the Norwegian fund is starting to see benefits from its stance on both categorizations.  Last year, for example, barring companies that depend on coal for their revenue, whether by mining the fossil fuel or using it to generate power, added 8 basis points to returns; shunning tobacco companies, which fell out of favor with investors last year relative to the broader market, added a further 4 basis points.Those are small numbers given the amount of money involved. But Norway’s sovereign fund has been a trailblazer in its willingness to withhold capital from companies deemed not to share its values. If it can prove that doing good need not mean sacrificing returns, more of the asset management community might be persuaded to follow suit – for all of our sakes.  This column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of Bloomberg LP and its owners.Mark Gilbert is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering asset management. He previously was the London bureau chief for Bloomberg News. He is also the author of "Complicit: How Greed and Collusion Made the Credit Crisis Unstoppable."For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinionSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

  • Nike, Under Armour, Fanatics and other sports retailers are making coronavirus masks
    Yahoo Finance

    Nike, Under Armour, Fanatics and other sports retailers are making coronavirus masks

    Fanatics is now making medical masks and gowns out of baseball jersey material to address the shortage caused by coronavirus; Nike, Under Armour and other sports retailers are also hurrying to make the same items.

  • How Does Anheuser-Busch InBev's (EBR:ABI) P/E Compare To Its Industry, After The Share Price Drop?
    Simply Wall St.

    How Does Anheuser-Busch InBev's (EBR:ABI) P/E Compare To Its Industry, After The Share Price Drop?

    To the annoyance of some shareholders, Anheuser-Busch InBev (EBR:ABI) shares are down a considerable 37% in the last...